The Schnee Family
We have been getting a lot of hints about Weiss’ family over the last two volumes. We know now that Weiss has a sister named Winter, and that Weiss is very aware of the wrongs her father has been doing against society and their family name. And…well, that is it directly. Still, based on what we have learned about Weiss and her family, I decided to have a little fun and draw some concepts of the not-yet revealed characters. :) These are really quick sketches because I am already working on a behemoth of a project for RWBY—I did this to relax and have fun.
Now, Weiss is very pale in matching with her name sake, which translates to White Snow. I looked at her family and the names we know and felt that her sister and father would look just a touch different. I decided to use Winter’s name since it is known. Winter is often described as dark and cold—whether snow is present or not. Like her sister, I imagine her to have very pale skin and the same piercing blue eyes. Unlike her sister, I see her hair as being much darker. Like a dark-blue to white shade.
I decided that the girls got their eyes from their father, a family trait passed on for generations in the Schnees—but that Winter took after her father in hair color. For their father, I had a strong vibe of the distinguished gentleman—cold and ruthless to his adversaries, but also possibly loving to his family. You know, just because he is doing bad things doesn’t mean that he would necessarily throw his family under the bus. He could feel that he is doing what is best to protect his family and children. So I wanted a look that, while having a slightly evil vibe, could also melt into the stern father or the one who is worried about his daughters.
Okay. Now time for crazy theories and stuff because it is late and I should be sleeping but would rather have fun! :) A bit ago I posted about a Monty Tweet with all kinds of goodies:
This is important because one of the names mentioned is Willow Schnee. So we have Weiss, Winter, and Willow Schnee. Looking at the symbol for Weiss (and her family) I found out that when you use the points like the picture above, there are three Ws—one for each name. Okay, I really think this is a coincidence but it is still cool.
Now…everyone probably felt Willow is a girl’s name. Actually, I did, too, for a moment. Then I thought it about. Not once in the entire series thus far has Weiss or anyone mentioned her mother. Not even in passing. In fact, Weiss only really talks about her father and finding out about her sister was through a hint dropped in volume 1 and then actually stating her in the second volume. So….what if Willow is her father’s name?
Wait! I have a reason for this—-several, actually. First of all, in many mythologies, Willow Trees are often depicted as either masculine or feminine figures, and it changes depending on the story and culture being told. A lot of Asian and Native American stories sometimes refer to the Willow Tree as a man or grandfather. In Asian legends, ghosts are often attracted to Willow trees. There are legends that make them female as well.
Also, there is a character in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings called Old Man Willow —it is often seen and referred to as a male spirit (possibly an Ent) whom despised the world of Man and Elf and grew more evil and spiteful throughout the ages.
And there is one more reason:
This is an image of a young father named Willow. In fact, the name of the movie is Willow—it is a classic from the early 80s and I recommend that anyone who is anybody should check it out. Great movie. But my main point is that the main character is a man, who is also a father (of a sonand daughter) and his name is Willow.
The possibilities of Willow being the father is actually kind of up there. Not super high, and I wouldn’t be surprised if I am wrong—but still, I think it would be kind of cool. Now, because of this theory, it encouraged me to choose a slightly darker hair color for him. Willow trees have various bark color, but generally they look dark because they are constantly within shadow. Yeah, heavy symbolism there. :)
Okay—-next theory: Winter Schnee.
Now, there is a lot of debate about how old Winter Schnee is and their relationship. Many think Winter is older and/or that Weiss is second fiddle to her sister and always trying to prove herself while she is overshadowed by her elder/younger sibling. I disagree with both points based on observation from the show itself.
First, and most important, is the fact that Weiss is the Heir. Now, in the rules and laws (well, expectations from ages of old) of inheritance, it is generally the eldest child who inherits (well, technically the male child…but Monty is cool and with the 21st century like that). When one is the Heir, they are known as Heir Apparent—-which is shortened to Heir by many people because it is pretty much a given that this person will inherit upon the death of their parent or Guardian. Basically, they are incapable of being displaced. If there are multiple possible heirs, they are called Heir Presumptive…and none of them really ever get the title of Heir until it is decided. There is an instance of co-inheritance, called Coparcenary. And all these little details can be seen in Wiki and dictionaries, etc. A quick Google search can confirm all these details, but here you go:
(yes, it seems the wiki misspells coparcenary. Thank you for Google and auto correct)
In all instances of Weiss, she is referred to as the Heir. Not possible, not Coparcenary—Heir. In episode 2 Volume 1, Ruby says: “I said I was sorry Princess” where Blake interrupts and says: “It’s Heiress, actually. Weiss Schnee. Heiress to the Schnee Dust Company.”
In episode 10, Volume 1, There is a very important conversation between Professor Port and Weiss. Professor Port had just established his pleasure at Weiss’ skill in combat and abilities as a huntress. She is, as always, happy to be acknowledged. Then the conversation turns to the question of leadership, to which Weiss is shocked. (long dictation here:)
"you would blindly accept his (Ozpin’s) decision, even after seeing how exceptional I am!?" she says.
"With all due respect," Professor Port returns, "Your exceptional skill on the battlefield is matched only by your poor attitude."
"How dare you!" Weiss exclaims in indignation.
"My point exactly. I see a girl before me who has spent her entire life getting exactly what she wanted."
"That’s even remotely true!" Weiss snaps haughtily. There is a moments pause as he waits. "Well…not entirely true…" Weiss relents a little.
Given this conversations and others, we see that Weiss does not in any way suffer from an inferiority complex. In fact, while talking to Pyrrha for the first time, she states that she is the “smartest girl” in class. Even in the most recent episode, she presents a determined, confident face. Now while she still demonstrated lack of confidence in fighting, she doesn’t show that anywhere else. The moment in the woods where she was talking herself through how to take on the Beowulf is more a reflection of her lack of direct experience than anything else.
So based on Weiss’ attitude and self view, how people react and treat her, and personal experience—I feel that Weiss is the older sister, and is in fact the one that overshadows Winter on many levels. BUT I think that in the beginning, the two sisters had an amicable relationship. We kind of get a hint of that in Episode 9 of volume 1. In fact, that was the first, super-subtle hint that Weiss even had a sister!
"Bunk beds are dangerous!" It was such a strange, out-of place line. And later, even more strange. "I’ve always wanted bunk beds." I missed that line entirely. I thought she was just being argumentative, then trying to make amends and showing that she didn’t always get what she wanted. In the back of my head, I was thinking…why would a single child want or think of a bunk bed? Well, I guess they saw friends with them or something or whatever…Many reasons. I didn’t know many single children so I could never ask. (Yes, it was a very narrow-minded view).
And then we find out she has a sister. So she had wanted a bunk-bed to share with her sister! ^_^ That so makes sense! but then…bunk beds are dangerous…. That line still seems so weird. So here is what I think:
Winter is sickly in some way.
It would explain why their father is perfectly okay with his precious Heiress seeking a huntress calling, yet says bunk beds are dangerous—-I mean, let’s face. She had to have heard the phrase from somewhere, and most likely it was during a time where she and maybe her sister were begging their father. But due to Winter’s frailty, he said they were dangerous and forbid it.
With Weiss working towards being a Huntress and Heiress, her time and schedule becomes very busy. As I said before, she knows where he strengths and weaknesses are, and she is confident in what she wants to be and to work towards it. But this time takes away from her relationship with her sister. She doesn’t see the changes nor the jealousy that is most likely to set in. Because Winter is probably the one overshadowed by her sister, not Weiss.
Frail Winter, who wasn’t allowed to go on bunk beds. Who had to watch her sister become a more and more skilled fighter and yet was forbidden to travel alone or pick up even a knife or whatever.
Invisible Winter, to where the receptionist wasn’t exactly sure if she came in with her father to the building. The receptionist had no problem saying her father was in. Then added…”I think your sister, Winter”. This sentence also more strongly for Weiss being heiress and not presumptive. If someone is a possible Heiress or coparcenary, then there is no way a receptionist would “think” they were there. They would know.
Winter, consumed by her own jealousy of her sister, takes on the yolk and shadow of her father. Following him around, seeing what he does—and agreeing with it.
As I said, this is all conjecture based on dialogue and behavior in the show. Really, you can put any face you want on it. But this makes the most sense to me. With RWBY having only two episodes left, I imagine that we won’t find out any more until the next Volume. I am hoping we get a hint of Adam by the end of this Volume, though :)